Caddied by his father, Davis Brooks broke a personal record and qualified for the 2013 U.S. Kids Golf World Championship in the same day.
BY MATT MENCARINI | SPORTS EDITOR
Davis Brooks started playing golf when he was 4 years old. It was a family thing.
And now, after only four years on the fairway, he has won his age division at the U.S. Kids Golf Jacksonville Spring Local tournament Sunday, April 7, breaking 40 for the first time to shoot a 39 in nine holes, at The Golf Club at Fleming Island.
He won the division by two strokes. The third-place finisher shot a 48.
The win, his fifth on the U.S. Kids circuit in the past six months, qualified him for the 2013 U.S. Kids Golf World Championship, in August, at Pinehurst Resort in Pinehurst, N.C., where he’ll compete against approximately 50 other golfers from around the world, in the 9-year-old division.
Caddied by his father, Steve Brooks, Davis had a tee time in the middle of the field April 7, so he had to wait a while before knowing just what his score meant.
“I didn’t even look at the score,” Davis said. “So on the last hole, my dad told me I broke 40, and I was like, ‘Yippee!’ And he said I might win.”
This was the first time Davis had ever played this course.
“It’s crazy good to par the last hole,” Steve Brooks said. “He two-putted from like 20 feet on the last hole to make par. And I knew what was at stake.”
Despite his success, Davis says he still gets nervous during big tournaments. It’s the unfamiliarity — not knowing the other golfers or the course — that does it, he says.
And although he’s been handling a club for four years, he’s only been playing golf competitively for a few months. But his swing is easy and smooth, and his father said he can drive the ball about 170 yards and has a mean short game.
Toward the end of last year, Brooks made his first birdie, on a par 5 at Tomoka Oaks Golf and Country Club. And in August, he’ll take on the best in his age group from all around the world.
It’ll be another new course, and another new challenge. But he won't face it alone.
“Me and my dad are a team,” he said. “He gives me the club and I just hit it.”